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Back in the old days, families gathered around the Christmas tree on Christmas morning and exchanged stockings rather than presents. Each family member would put one "stocking stuffer" in each of the other family member's stocking. Then they would exchange these small token gifts.
Somewhere along the way, we lost the true meaning of Christmas morning. It became commercialized and all about the biggest gifts. While the Christmas holiday is about the birth of Christ, we can still enjoy exchanging gifts without it being so much about money.
Years back our family adopted the idea of going back to the old days. We decided that the stockings would be the centerpiece of our Christmas morning, and celebrating Christ's birthday. We made some adjustments to the stocking stuffer idea, and here is what we came up with:
On Christmas morning, we would all get up and have breakfast as a family. Once we all had our coffee and breakfast, we all gathered in the living room floor with our stockings in tow. Rather than just grip em and rip em, we instead decided to savor our little fun.
Every person bought the other members five gifts each. The catches were that they had to cost less than five bucks, and they had to fit in the stocking. Another key rule was that we had to take the time to wrap each present. While it seems that nothing really good would come of this gift wise, our first year of this was the best Christmas ever. Why?
First, we were all together and enjoying it. We had a wonderful time just being together. Second, the gifts became an ongoing joke. You would not believe how much fun it was opening up these silly little gifts. It seemed that each of us had reached out to try to find the silliest gifts we could find.
Some examples of stocking stuffers over the years included a whoopee cushion, post it notes, erasers, a toy airplane, a paddle ball, Bibles and even a box of itching powder. As you can see, it opens up the entire world of gifts to you. Nothing is seemingly off limits and we really have fun with it.
The key is to open the gifts one by one and take your time. Do not let the Holiday overcome you without spending quality time with those that you love.
Another tradition we have added is that at least one of the gifts be homemade. It could be a homemade cookie, a handcrafted drawing or even a letter. Whatever you want to do is up to you. This personal aspect to our stocking stuffers adds a bit of loving kindness to the entire day.
At the end of the morning, we all go out for lunch and a walk. There is little that is more relaxing than walking through the mountains after a great morning of stocking stuffers and family. Give it a try this Holiday season and you might be surprised at the fun you will have.